The Pulaski Technical College Foundation hosted its 2nd annual Business of Art event on Thursday, raising more than $50,000 in scholarship funds.
More than 225 people enjoyed an evening of music, art, food and entertainment and live and silent auctions in the Campus Center Grand Hall where area artists showcased their talents at an art exposition.
This year's honorees were acclaimed glassblower James Hayes, who owns and operates the James Hayes Art Glass Company in Pine Bluff, and Little Rock businesswoman Renata Byler, vice president of Roller Funeral Homes.
Guest artists included painter Theresa Cates and sculptors Jennifer Hodges and Bryan Windred Massey, Sr.
Special musical entertainment was provided by Lawrence Hamilton, an Arkansas native, whose career has spanned more than three decades of singing, dancing, arranging and directing. Accompanied by pianist Dell Smith, Hamilton performed two numbers, "Tonight" from West Side Story and "Everything Must Change," first made popular by Quincy Jones.
"The Business of Art provides money for greatly needed scholarships for students in the Business and Fine Arts Departments," said Dr. Dan F. Bakke, college president. "We're grateful to the honorees, to our talented artists, to our donors and to attendees who are helping create opportunities for our students."
Proceeds from last year's Business of Art event are currently providing full-tuition scholarships to two Pulaski Technical College students - Susanna Garcia and Catina Flowers. Both ladies spoke during the event and expressed their appreciation for the scholarships that have enabled them to attend college.
The event began at 6 p.m. with a reception in the Campus Center foyer. Guests were served jumbo stuffed shrimp, Sicilian chicken strips, red wine mushroom caps, crudities with spinach dip, fruit and cheese, and an assortment of desserts, including chocolate crème brulee, chocolate strawberries and cake.
Hayes donated a hand-blown glass bowl hat was sold during a live auction event. Other items sold at the live auction included a piece by the honoree for last year's Business of Art, Kevin Cole, and painter Theresa Cates. Additional funds were raised during a silent auction that featured more than 40 packages of goods and services.
Melody and Steve Stanley, owners of Red Door Gallery in North Little Rock, chaired this year's event while KARK Channel 4 anchor Sonseeahray Tonsall served as emcee. Event sponsors were Roller Funeral Homes, Glazer's Distributors of Arkansas, Arkansas Business, Ben E. Keith, Inviting Arkansas, the Heritage Company and Twin City Bank.